Acts 18

Acts 18 has Paul coming to Corinth and meeting a believer named Aquila and his wife Priscilla who had fled Italy after Claudius commanded the Jews to leave Rome.  This husband, wife combo were tentmakers like Paul, and provided a place for him to stay as he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews.  But he didn’t get a good response at all so “he shook out his garments and said to them, Your blood be on your own heads!  I am innocent.  From now on I will go to the Gentiles”.  Paul isn’t going to stay where people aren’t willing to listen.  He moves on to a different place in Corinth and stays with Titus Justus who lived next to the synagogue.

Many were hearing and believing Paul’s message, but there was a group that opposed him everywhere he went, and he lived with a cloud of concern over his head as the opposition Jews were trying to drive him away or worse.  But God gives Paul a vision.  “Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people”.  God assured Paul that not only was he safe, but he was among friends, lots of them, in God’s Kingdom.  So “he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them”.

Paul didn’t give a message or teach a day or two.  He was there for eighteen months teaching and preaching and sharing Jesus.  That’s a serious investment.  But the resistance to his teaching continues and finally the Jews attack him and drag him before the local proconsul Gallio.  He rejects their request, but that doesn’t keep them from beating the ruler of the synagogue sending a strong message to Paul and his fellow disciples.  So they move along on their missionary journey and stop at a number of cities.

What happens when Paul stops in a city?  Scripture tells us he “reasoned with the Jews….greeted the church….strengthening all the disciples”.  He was about impacting the local Christ Followers and preaching Christ crucified.  As he went, he ran across strong Christ Followers that he also worked with like Apollos whom he met in Ephesus.  They spoke boldly together and Apollos joined the effort to preach Jesus as “he powerfully refuted the Jews in public, showing by the Scriptures that the Christ was Jesus”.  Our calling is no different than Paul, Aquilla or Apollos.  We are to ‘go and make disciples’.  That was their charge.  It remains ours today!

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